When it comes to university talent sourcing, and student internship portals, Handshake has been leading the pack. The startup has secured over $74 million in funding so far, and can boast a network of 400,000 employers and over 800 universities.
Consider it an automated, third-party version of the college career center, with a breadth of opportunities few schools could even try to match.
The concept was born out of a frustration common to students who lack the professional connections to easily land their first jobs. Indeed, Handshake sees itself as helping to solve the so-called “pipeline problem,” the belief that there aren’t enough qualified candidates, particularly among underrepresented groups, to fill STEM roles.
But Handshake also had its own pipeline issue, because it was open only to students who attended institutions that agreed to work with the platform and essentially market it on their campuses. It was an effective and relatively cheap distribution strategy, one that has put Handshake in front of student bodies ranging from state schools and mid-tier private colleges to Ivy League institutions. But the setup ultimately limited the platform’s reach.
Now, Handshake has announced that it has opened access to its platform to all undergraduate students attending a four-year university in the United States, a move the company says will further its mission to provide more access to opportunities regardless of privilege or pedigree. All students need for proof of enrollment is a valid “@.edu” email address.
Read more here.
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